bacterial intelligence: they signal electrically in biofilm (Animals)

by David Turell @, Wednesday, March 21, 2018, 13:08 (209 days ago) @ dhw

DAVID's comment (under “Immunity"): These findings add to the complexity of the immune response. Since bacteria and viruses constantly or on the attack, these systems must have developed early in evolution in a complete defense. They must have been designed by God.

dhw: Your God must have had lots of fun designing these killer bacteria and viruses, and then working out ways in which some organisms might or might not be able to survive them. And apparently all for the sake of the human brain.

DAVID: Another non-religious thought is God created a such a strong driving force to produce life on Earth with bacteria that viruses also appeared and in each group nasty ones popped up, that then had to be controlled. Raises the issue of whether God is under total control or just well-intended? I have no way of knowing.

dhw: You have no way of knowing, and yet when I suggest that he might deliberately have sacrificed control (as opposed to actually losing control, which is the possibility you envisage here with nasty ones “popping up”) and allowed evolution to run its own course, you refuse to accept that possibility.

DAVID: God was obviously prepared when He gave humans the degree of consciousness we have. You can't extrapolate that willingness to anything before He achieved his goal.

dhw: Nor can you assume that he did not have that willingness before humans came on the scene. These are two different theistic hypothesis – God in complete control until evolution reached Homo sapiens, or God deliberately allowing evolution to run its own course (though of course he could dabble if he wanted to). The latter fits perfectly with the higgledy-piggledy bush of comings and goings, and you cannot claim you know that your God did not willingly relinquish control.

DAVID: If God wanted a directed evolution, as I believe He did, then His release of any control would have been with guidelines, as I've suggested in the past.

dhw: The only guidelines you have come up with are precise instructions handed down by the first cells, or personal dabbles. No autonomy anywhere. So did he give the nasty bacteria and viruses guidelines, as above, or did he lose control, or maybe even willingly sacrifice control? Now apparently you have no way of knowing. We are making progress.

Since it is obvious to me God used evolution to create living forms and He wanted the arrival of humans, He controlled the advance of evolution, but viruses may have been a side effect of the drive for life. They appear to have been present since the very beginning, which also suggests they are a purposeful addition. Evidence is not clear.


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